The Xiris Blog

Checking Tube Welds Before and After Scarfing

Posted by Cameron Serles on Wednesday, December 07, 2016 @ 10:01 AM

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The process of tube welding requires several variables to be in check for efficient and stable production and to meet the quality demands of the industry.  Mill dynamics, from setup to production, have an impact on the stability of these variables.  Measuring and monitoring these variables is the first step in controlling them and improving weld quality for tube fabricators.

In response, tube fabricators employ laser based weld inspection systems to monitor a variety of geometrical features around the weld area of the tube and to provide early warning of quality issues related to the welding and forming process.  Traditionally placed right after the weld box on a tube mill, where the majority of tube forming and weld bead measurements can be made, such systems provide the operator with an early warning of weld related process variations that could lead to quality defects.  

While most tube mill customers use the system right after the weld box where the most as-weld related information is available, some fabricators use it after scarfing to check for quality issues related to the scarfing process: does the scarfing tool cut too deeply, or not enough?  Is the tool damaged?  Is the scarf cut a consistent amount?  All these questions can be addressed by installing a weld system after scarfing.

Now, Xiris has developed a double head laser based weld inspection system that allows for one head to be placed immediately after the weld box and one head immediately after scarfing.  In this way, tube fabricators can monitor their tube production before scarfing for weld related defects; and after scarfing for potential scarf related issues.

 

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WI2000 Double Head Configuration: One Head Post Weld, One Head Post Scarf

 With a double head configuration, tube fabricators can better control their process and improve quality by monitoring the tube profile, weld bead geometry and final scarf cut, all controlled from a single system. 

 

For more information on how Xiris Weld Cameras can help monitor your weld processes, visit Xiris.com or sign up to receive the Weld Video of the Month 

Topics: quality control, weld camera, weld inspection, Xiris, Tube and Pipe welding, scarfing, weld seam

Xiris Helps Tube Producer Eliminate Weld Problems

Posted by Cornelius Sawatzky on Wednesday, November 16, 2016 @ 10:08 AM

Xiris’ WI2000 Weld Inspection System measures weld bead and formed tube geometry for tube and pipe producers.  Recently, the WI2000 was featured in an article in the Tube and Pipe Journal, where it was identifed as a major reason why Middletown Tube of Ohio, USA was able to improve its tube quality and reduce its scrap rate.

Providing more benefits than was expected, the WI2000 has helped the tube producer find defects with their mill equipment and setup; catching potential defects before they become failures and cause scrap.  As a result, tube mill setups have become a science rather than an art for Middletown.

Read the full article here.

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For more information on how Xiris Weld Inspection Systems can improve the quality and productivity of your tube and pipe production, visit Xiris.com 

You may also be interested in our Weld Video of the Month 

Topics: quality control, weld inspection, Xiris, welding, Tube and Pipe welding, productivity tools, Middletown Tube

Post Scarf Inspection on Tube and Pipe Mills

Posted by Cameron Serles on Tuesday, June 30, 2015 @ 09:54 AM

Scarfing is a process of removing excess weld bead on a pipe or tube to create a desired shape.  It is done by planing longitudinally welded tubes or pipes right after the welding process.  If it is done perfectly, the resulting profile will match the ideal shape of the parent material.  However, if the scarf tool is set to plane too much material, or not enough, the resulting profile could appear too deep or leave a weld bead above the parent material.

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Result of a Scarf Tool Cutting Too Deeply
 
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Result of a Scarf Tool Not Cut Deep Enough
 

Detecting if the scarf tool is properly adjusted is a difficult task to do on a continuous basis.  In particular, some thick walled tube and pipe mills make precision end products using multiple scarf cuts using scarfing tools operating sequentially.  If not correctly adjusted, the tube or pipe could end up with an incorrect profile shapes where the scarf occurred.  A way to make sure that the right amount of material is removed from the welded tube is important.  If placed after the scarfing process on a tube mill, the Xiris WI-2000p can measure the scarf width and bead height left behind after a scarfing process to provide quality control of the scarfing process itself.

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Image of an Ideal Scarf Zone from the WI-2000p from Xiris

 

In the above image taken from a WI-2000p system, a laser profile is shown of a welded tube, post scarf.  The area of the scarfing does not reflect the laser line as well, so the scarfed area can be easily detected and measured.  As the scarf cuts deeper into the material, the scarf width will increase, as it cuts shallower, the scarf width will decrease.

Conclusion

Measuring the scarf area of a tube or pipe with a device such as the WI-2000p Weld inspection system from Xiris is a quality control tool to ensure that the scarfing process has been set properly and not cutting too little or too much of the parent material away.


 

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 For more information on how Xiris Weld Cameras can help monitor your weld processes, visit Xiris.com 

Topics: weld inspection, Tube and Pipe welding, scarfing, WI-2000p

Success at Fabtech Atlanta for Xiris!

Posted by Leanne Sinclair on Monday, November 24, 2014 @ 12:06 PM

Fabtech is North America’s largest metal forming and fabricating event that occurs every year. Fabtech began in 1981 and had grown steadily since, this year alone the show featured over 27,000 attendees and 1,400 exhibitors. Xiris was very pleased to be one of these exhibitors, and was very excited to debut our new product, the Xiris XVC-1000 Weld Camera, at Fabtech in Atlanta, Georgia this past November 11-13th.

The Xiris booth featured two examples of the new camera system: one camera was installed on a laser beam delivery system that demonstrated how well the camera integrates into laser, plasma or electron beam welding machines; and the other camera was integrated to a high intensity LED light source that could demonstrate the ability to see a super bright object while able to image darker areas in its background, similar to an actual welding environment.

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Xiris XVC-1000 Camera Integrated to Laser Beam Delivery System

The Xiris booth was in Hall C, which focused on companies exhibiting equipment for the Welding and Tube & Pipe industries. There were numerous booths specializing in welding equipment, and Xiris had weld camera systems for both Open Arc and Submerged Arc Welding demonstrated in a variety of other booths including: Lincoln Electric, Gullco, Irco, LaserMech, LJ Welding/Praxair, Red-D-Arc/AirGas, and ESAB. This display of the weld cameras inspired plenty of interest in the product line that kept the Xiris sales team very busy during the show!

Xiris is proud to partner with so many prominent companies, and respond to so much interest during the show. Many welding machine builders and laser manufacturers saw great value in integrating the Xiris Weld Camera into their processes and machinery. With small format size, high dynamic range capability and remote imaging, the XVC-1000 is a powerful addition to any welding process.

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The Xiris Booth at Fabtech

After a successful show, Xiris returned with high hopes and prospects for the XVC-1000.
For more pictures of the show, please visit our social media pages!
See you at Fabtech Chicago 2015!

Topics: quality control, weld camera, weld inspection, Trade Show, new product launch

Decrease Injuries, Increase Efficiency and Prioritize Workplace Safety!

Posted by Leanne Sinclair on Tuesday, September 09, 2014 @ 05:28 PM

The construction of large ship vessels is a very complex and hazardous trade. In order to fabricate these large structures, there are various positions and maintenance that needs to be completed for proper assembly. Unfortunately, this increases the risk of accidents. As many shipyards use sub-arc welding, this process involves operators to be suspended high in the air, or exposed to different gases and hazards.

In 2011, two workers were fatally injured on the site of a Singapore shipyard, when a powerful explosion was caused due to the build-up of pressurized air. Fortunately, other team members were inside the nearby building attending a safety briefing when the accident occurred. The explosion shook the entire stretch near Benoi Road, and the loss of the two workers was mourned by various media outlets.  

Sadly, these types of accidents are common in this area of work. The article of this accident is accompanied with a chart that demonstrates that in 2007 14.3% of accidents occurring at shipyards were due to fire and explosions, most commonly associated with welding. The graph below demonstrates a study conducted by the Ministry of Manpower in 2013 of the Workplace Injuries by Industry and Degree of Injury. You will see that Construction, Manufacturing and Marine trades have the highest amount of fatalities and are the most common trades using welding.

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These studies demonstrate the demand for increased safety in all of these trades, specifically shipbuilding. These huge constructions involve a variety of complex conditions and trades that need to be completed with efficiency and reliability. Risking a worker’s life by adding hazardous factors to an already dangerous trade is unnecessary and should be avoided. In order to complete reliable and quality welds, it is important that it is monitored, but this does not mean the operator must be where the weld occurs. With the development of welding cameras, injuries and fatalities in this industry can be largely reduced.

Systems such as the Xiris XVC-S Weld Camera for Sub Arc Welding can be added to conditions commonly seen in shipyards. This small addition could have large benefits, and large decreases in the high number of injuries and deaths seen in this prominent trade. It allows welds to be monitored consistently, from a safe distance, which would increase worker safety and efficiency.

 

Is your shipyard safe? Are your welds consistent and the best quality you can provide? Can you risk any more lost product, lost time, or employee safety?

To learn more about how Xiris Weld Cameras can benefit your business, please visit our website.

Topics: weld camera, weld inspection, weld environment, weld safety, Sub Arc welding, safety, camera, weld allignment, visibility, accident, fatal, death

Monitoring Squeeze Pressure on Tube and Pipe Mills

Posted by Cameron Serles on Tuesday, August 12, 2014 @ 03:58 PM

Recent advancements in machine vision technology have made a new type of inspection capable of recognizing defects related to the forming and welding area of a tube or pipe.  The result is improved quality assurance and process control on the production line.  The new type of inspection device is a laser-based triangulation system that measures the outside contour of a tube or pipe in the vicinity of its weld. 

Typically NDT (non-destructive testing) systems are placed at the end of a production as a final check.  However, the laser inspection system can be placed directly after the weld box.  This system can let operators know what is changing in the welding process, allowing them to perform corrective action before significant scrap occurs. This capability is especially helpful for one of the most common defects found across all types of tube manufacturing: insufficient or excess squeeze pressure. This pressure is used to form the tube during welding and can be monitored by measuring the bead ratio of the tube.

The Bead Ratio

The bead ratio is an important measurement for ERW/HF processes to monitor.  It is calculated by measuring the maximum bead height above the parent material, divided by the thickness of the parent material wall thickness.  The bead ratio is an excellent indication of the amount of squeeze pressure used on an ERW/HF mill during welding. When the squeeze pressure is too high, molten material will spill out of the seam, causing a higher bead to form and increasing the bead ratio.  Likewise, when the squeeze pressure is too small, the parent material will not be pushed together enough and a sunken weld will result, causing the bead ratio to fall.  By taking into account the wall thickness, the bead ratio can determine the severity of a sunken or raised weld for a particular weld thickness, making it more of a measurement relevant across all tube thicknesses.

 sadjf;lasdkjfa;lllllllkj resized 600The Bead Ratio (h/e), where “h” = the height of the bead and “e” = the tube wall thickness.

How the WI2000p System Measures the Bead Ratio

Xiris Automation Inc. has developed a non-destructive inspection system called the WI2000p Weld Inspection System. The WI2000p includes a laser line and a camera whose optical axis is offset to the axis of the laser line by an “offset angle”.  The WI2000p creates a visible cross-section of the tube by projecting the laser line on to the tube and capturing an image of the line using the camera.  The resulting image shows a profile of the tube surface as if it were cut in cross section.  If a tube is ideally round, the laser image will represent a section of an ellipse and any anomaly such the bead height can be mathematically detected. 

The WI2000p bases all of its measurements on the differences between the actual laser profile line seen by the camera, and the ideal mathematical profile based on the tube parameters.  By knowing the position of the actual laser profile, the ideal profile, and the size of the pixels in the image, the WI2000p can detect weld bead profile defects that often escape detection by other quality tools such as Eddy Current testing, or Ultrasonic Testing techniques.

Conclusion

Overall, laser-based 3D imaging systems, such as the WI2000p from Xiris, offer an excellent measurement option for tube mill owners/operators who want additional, real-time monitoring of weld features. They can be used in a proactive manner, warning operators what is changing in their welding process so that they can perform corrective action before significant scrap occurs And by measuring the outside contour of a weld, laser-based 3D imaging systems can operate on any type of material, regardless of its reflectance or magnetic properties, using a single head to perform the measurement.


Topics: weld inspection, Machine Vision, camera placement, Welding Process, Tube and Pipe welding